Comparison of quantitative EEG to current clinical decision rules for head CT use in acute mild traumatic brain injury in the ED☆,☆☆,★


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Abstract

Study objective:We compared the performance of a handheld quantitative electroencephalogram (QEEG) acquisition device to New Orleans Criteria (NOC), Canadian CT Head Rule (CCHR), and National Emergency X-Radiography Utilization Study II (NEXUS II) Rule in predicting intracranial lesions on head computed tomography (CT) in acute mild traumatic brain injury in the emergency department (ED).Methods:Patients between 18 and 80 years of age who presented to the ED with acute blunt head trauma were enrolled in this prospective observational study at 2 urban academic EDs in Detroit, MI. Data were collected for 10 minutes from frontal leads to determine a QEEG discriminant score that could maximally classify intracranial lesions on head CT.Results:One hundred fifty-two patients were enrolled from July 2012 to February 2013. A total 17.1% had acute traumatic intracranial lesions on head CT. Quantitative electroencephalogram discriminant score of greater than or equal to 31 was found to be a good cutoff (area under receiver operating characteristic curve = 0.84; 95% confidence interval [CI], 0.76-0.93) to classify patients with positive head CT. The sensitivity of QEEG discriminant score was 92.3 (95% CI, 73.4-98.6), whereas the specificity was 57.1 (95% CI, 48.0-65.8). The sensitivity and specificity of the decision rules were as follows: NOC 96.1 (95% CI, 78.4-99.7) and 15.8 (95% CI, 10.1-23.6); CCHR 46.1 (95% CI, 27.1-66.2) and 86.5 (95% CI, 78.9-91.7); NEXUS II 96.1 (95% CI, 78.4-99.7) and 31.7 (95% CI, 23.9-40.7).Conclusion:At a sensitivity of greater than 90%, QEEG discriminant score had better specificity than NOC and NEXUS II. Only CCHR had better specificity than QEEG discriminant score but at the cost of low (< 50%) sensitivity.

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